In 2018 we kicked off a new adult reading program, Read Without Boundaries, designed to challenge readers to read outside their comfort zones. Each month featured a different theme, encouraging readers to try new authors, genres and topics. Our themes included immigration stories, poetry, travel, science, and more.
I admit that I was nervous. I wasn’t sure patrons would like this or want to read the themes we chose, but we had such a great response from our patrons. Over 150 people signed up and more than 30 completed all 12 months! Many patrons have expressed how much they loved this program, as it pushed them to read books they wouldn’t have otherwise read.
I also read a number of titles I wouldn’t have read if not for RWB and found that I really enjoyed them. Some of my favorites that I read over the year were Don’t Call Us Dead by Danez Smith (poetry), Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado (author of color), Middlemarch by George Eliot (classics), and What You Should Know About Politics But Don’t by Jessamyn Conrad (politics).
Introducing Read Without Boundaries Vol. 2!
Due to its popularity, we’ve decided to continue with another year of Read Without Boundaries! Volume 2 will have new themes to challenge readers, more great book suggestions, and lots of fun prizes. This year will include a Summer Edition for our summer reading program, and another opportunity to win more prizes! We are also inviting teens to participate this year, so if you have a teen at home, please encourage them to join in!
If you would like to participate, you can sign up at the Adult Services desk or online here. Each month will feature a new theme and will have a list of reading suggestions, which you can pick up at the Adult Services desk or find online. When you finish your monthly challenge, you can return the entry form to the Adult Services desk or log it online. Prizes will be available at the Adult Services desk, while supplies last. You do not have to complete each challenge by the end of the month. We will take entries for all months at any time during the year. Readers that complete all twelve challenges will be entered into a drawing for a grand prize at the end of the year.
January’s theme is Illinois history, so we are asking that you read a book (fiction or nonfiction) about Illinois history or a book by or about a famous Illinois figure. Check out our list of suggestions.
On January 10 at 7 p.m., we are also having a Read Without Boundaries wrap-up party. If you participated in the program in 2018, or are considering joining for 2019, please join us to talk about our favorite books from the year, learn about the program, and pick up some free books!